In February 2017, I made a couple of visits to Edinburgh where I played escape rooms that had been recommended to me by fellow enthusiasts. This wasn’t our more usual in-depth visits but rather focused on a small number of quality escape rooms – we visited just four venues, Locked In Edinburgh, Exit Plan, Can You Escape? and Escape Hour. For a city with just a handful of venues, Edinburgh punches well above its weight, providing enthusiasts with a strong string of games. Inside the UK, only London has this many good venues in one location, and nowhere can compete in terms of average game quality.
Even better, as a relatively small city, all the games are easily walkable from the city centre, so it’s easy to put a schedule together to visit the list below – probably even squeezing them into a single day if you are super keen but certainly over a relaxed weekend.
In summary, if you can get a team of four or more people together, you should definitely play Locked In Edinburgh’s the Secret Lab which is, at the time of writing, my favourite game. Period. After that, you’ve got a lot of reasonably evenly matched games. If you’re looking to play three good games at a single venue, then Exit Plan is a strong choice. Can You Escape? provides a very well structured and thoroughly enjoyable game with interesting and varied challenges. Escape Hour felt like a great adventure, racing through a large collection of puzzles that kept you on your toes. In all honesty, I’d suggest you try to play all seven games (maybe more – Escape Hour have opened a new game since last I visited, and Can You Escape? have an additional game that we didn’t play).
If you want to read about the games in a bit more depth, you can do so here:
You can find a full and up-to-date list of Edinburgh escape games here. The other two franchises in the capital are by no means terrible – I’ve played Escape Rooms Scotland and Escape games in other cities and enjoyed them but, from what I’ve heard, none here would match the games above. I’ve played Escape’s Area 51, Contagion, da Vinci and Escape Casino games elsewhere. Each has its strong points but also some weaknesses so, while I wouldn’t recommend them, I’d expect them to be good enough for beginners to have fun. The Escape Rooms Scotland games I played up in Dundee were strong – probably stronger than their Edinburgh counterparts, by all accounts.
That’s all, folks
I hope you found this write-up useful. If you did, then please let me know via email, and that will encourage me to write more in future. If you’ve got opinions on the above or, equally, if you’ve found some other gems that people should take a look at, do drop a comment below.
It’s a pity that Dr. Knox’s Enigma is no more; I had heard an unconnected owner in Edinburgh being highly complimentary about it, speaking with their enthusiast hat on, and had wondered if that might also be one to consider.
I’d heard good things but sadly I think that’s one’s consigned to history. Oubliette, Bad Clown, Dr Knox’s Enigma and now Time Run. Let that be a lesson to us all – strike while the iron is hot!
“My favourite game. Period.” makes me sad. We are British and have full-stops. Or at least, you are. 😛
Ah, I’m full of Americanisms – my company sells overseas so I tend to default to US language. Fortunately Mrs Logic reviews most of my articles and strips them out. She’s way more pro-British English than I am and she’s not even British…
Let the language evolve 😉
Just returned from Edinburgh and did all the games listed above and a new room which just opened, Escape Reality (escapereality.com), which was not particularly strong, although they have five other rooms, so more to explore.
Thanks for the recommendations, we really liked Can You Escape? and, of course, the Secret Lab which is incredible.
Great to hear David. I’ve played Escape Reality over in Glasgow and my experiences were pretty poor. Jungala was truly terrible, while the other two I tried (Alcatraz and Whitechapel) were OK but not great. It’s not helped by their terrible clue system – why they choose to use tablets instead of GMs is beyond me. They seemed to have enough staff to comfortably have GMed us when we were there.